May is the month of Mary and a time for all mothers in various forms. Pope Francis noted at the beginning of the year, “A mother’s gaze is the path to rebirth and growth. We need mothers, women who look at the world not to exploit it, but so that it can have life…let us place ourselves under the protection of this woman, the Mother of God, who is also our mother. May she help us to keep and ponder all things, unafraid of trials and with the joyful certainty that the Lord is faithful and can transform every cross into a resurrection.”
Mary the mother of God, is also our mother as ordained by Jesus Himself. In this Easter season, we ponder the words of Jesus Christ to Mary and John as He died on the cross, “When Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing near, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, behold, your son!’ Then he said to the disciple, ‘Behold, your mother!’ And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home” ( Jn 19:26–27).
It was at this point that Christ gifted His mother to humanity. However, what does this mean for each of us 2000 years later?
Let us ponder our own relationship with our earthly mothers, grandmothers and even the ‘tanties’ that loved and guided us along the way.
As Pope Francis rightly notes, the feminine principle is the life giver and nurturer of the world, which begins with the creation and growth of the human foetus and baby.
Yet, how many times throughout our lives have our mothers given us new life with a meal, a smile, and precious words of wisdom. Globally, a mother’s hearth is celebrated as a place in which we can find rest, peace, and nourishment.
For many, it is a safe space in which we can be ‘resurrected’ from our daily challenges with the power of our mother’s love and concern.
The beauty of Christ’s gift to us in the form of His mother is that all of humanity has access to the profound, unconditional love of the mother through His own mother, Mary.
No matter the relationship we have with our earthly mothers, God has presented each of His faithful with the possibility of a rich and nurturing relationship that will guide us directly back to His loving care and a place of unconditional acceptance.
We may live today with the joyful certainty that each cross we are called to carry can be transformed. Through the path of God, our rebirth and growth are certain and just as we can relax and return to our authentic nature in our mothers’ homes, we should also strive to do the same in the house of God – the Church.
According to EWTN.com, “At a General Audience in 2013, Pope Francis explored the meaning of the Church being our Mother…The Church like a good mother accompanies our development by transmitting to us the Word of God, which is a light that directs the path of Christian life; she administers the Sacraments. She nourishes us with the Eucharist, she brings us the forgiveness of God through the Sacrament of Penance, she helps us in moments of sickness with the Anointing of the sick. The Church accompanies us throughout our entire life of faith, throughout the whole of our Christian life.”
This Mother’s Day let us embrace the unconditional love that is available to each of us through Christ.
Happy Mother’s Day from all of us at the Catholic News.